“Without filter”, the anti-capitalist palme d’or – L’insubordination

“Without filter”, satire directed by Ruben Östlund received the Palme d’Or at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival. An anti-capitalist Palme d’Or. What is this movie about? A couple of young models and influencers, Carl and Yaya have won a luxury cruise on a yacht populated by the ultra-rich. On the program: sunbathing, caring staff, great cuisine and flowing champagne. Then, a shipwreck disrupts the dream cruise. This event abolishes the usual social relations. It creates a new hierarchy among everyone on the cruise, from the ultra-rich just wanting to bask in luxury to the yacht staff. Our article.

“Without filter”: meeting with ultra-rich above ground

Life on the Boat presents portraits of the ultra-rich who, with the best intentions in the world, deceive themselves or abuse their power. A Russian oligarch forces all crew members to take a bath to enjoy the cruise because “ we are all equal in his words. An elderly couple still in love define themselves as honest craftsmen… They make anti-personnel mines. The American and communist captain gets drunk with the capitalist Russian oligarch who is proud to “sell shit”. He thus names the fertilizer which produces his wealth.

Following a violent storm, the boat sank. A few castaways manage to reach the shore of an island that seems deserted.

The reversal of power

Among the survivors, Abigail, ex-responsible for the toilets on the yacht, is the only one who knows how to fish by hand, clean the octopuses and make a fire. As a result, she refuses to share the fish product equally. She demands to be the captain now. We are witnessing an inversion of power. Traditionally held by a man, white and capitalist, it passes to an individual triple exploited: woman, migrant and poor wage earner.

This scene is the illustration of the power returned to the producer, to the essential worker to create wealth. Here, food and fire. The genius of the film is this total overthrow of power which is the traditional goal of the revolutionary left: power to workers. Today, LFI’s objective would rather be power to the people within the framework of a citizens’ revolution.

Voluntary servitude

The lack of reaction from the other castaways is striking. While superior in numbers and social power, they submit. One thinks of “voluntary Servitude” described by La Boétie. Even when three men, formerly dominant, manage to hunt (a poor donkey is killed for food), Abigail remains the leader. The castaways do not dream of challenging his authority. Within days, they adapted to servility.

An autocratic matriarchy

For her part, Abigail does not think of a democratic sharing of power and takes full advantage of autocracy. She sexually attributes to herself Carl, the young male model, ” the handsome boy in a relationship with his young influencer companion, Yaya. She bends with resignation to this event, going so far as to congratulate Abigail for having established a matriarchy. Women support his power even though they have no interest in it.

Finally it is Yaya, a woman, who undertakes to explore the island to try to get out of confinement. Men, on the other hand, prefer to lounge jokingly on the beach.

Run to see “Without filter”, this anti-capitalist palme d’or which dividese. A very funny film about social relations, the gender relations that we have every day, and their possible inversion. In short, a work describing both with subtlety and tenderness human alienation.

By Joelle Lanteri

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“Without filter”, the anti-capitalist palme d’or – L’insubordination